tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN September 7, 2010 10:00am-1:00pm EDT
the justice system is the biggest form of abuse caused by illegal drugs. caller: i have a problem with the host. we pay this man's salary. we pay this man's health care. if we see him as a joke, we have every right to say that. do not attack him for that. if you listen to him, it is obvious, this man is working to keep his own job. as far as canada's goes in this country, the vast majority goes the vast majority have used -- pack as far as cannabis goes, the vast majority of us have used it. as far as afghanistan and opium, we saw on the news where our
soldiers were guarding the poppy fields. we're using our tax dollars to guard the poppy fields. this is a joke. as far as the opium and cocaine, and do not know, that marijuana is not that bad. it should be legalized. i do not use it no more. it is not that big a deal. thank you. guest: 2 richard and all of the other callers, one of the great advantages of living in the american society is we can have this dialogue and you get to this dialogue and you get to speak your piece, but clearly i cannot change the laws and the united states. elected officials get paid to do that. as long as illegal and unlawful, something i believe is correct and we should not be making illegal, then we are duty bound
to enforce the laws. respectfully, i would tell you to direct your comments to congress. host: what keeps you awake at night, what worries you the most with respect to the importation of illegal drugs? guest: it is the drug trade and transnational criminal organizations. i think that is what many of the viewers missed. the same organizations involved in the drug trade today had transportation organizations, money launderers, document forgers, a transportation specialist who are engaged in all kinds of various activity, and for the right price will engage in all kinds of illegal activity. we see it on a daily basis when an organization that is practically an -- that is trafficking cocaine constructs a fully functional summarsubmarin. it was designed to move drug
contraband, but the availability and existence of the vehicle certainly poses other questions such as weapons of mass destruction and terror risk. i think that is what we are really up against, the underground economy and transnational criminal organizations who were routed by one thing in one thing only, and that is profits. host: a final tweet about your earlier comment. people direct their anger at other people. who is the right audience? legalization of any drug? guest: there are a number of guest: there are a number of initiatives that are ongoing. california and other states have initiatives. this is where the populace gets a chance to vote and be heard.
we obviously have useviews. we see the damage these drugs inflect, but we do not have the authority to make substantive changes to the law and that needs to be state legislators and the national congress. host: our guest, assistant administrator in chief of intelligence at the dea. we will continue that conversation smarm morning at 7:00 eastern time. and thank you for being with us on this tuesday as you head back to school and work. enjoy the rest of your day and have a good week ahead. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] . .
make history on line at the c- span2 video library. -- the c-span a video library. watch what happened as that happened, any time. it is washington your way. >> and now a panel of legal analysts on issues involving the trials of suspected terrorists. the talk about whether they should be conducted in civilian courts or military tribunals. it was part of a recent judicial conference in hawaii was to buy the ninth circuit court of appeals. -- hosted by the ninth circuit court of appeals. >> ever since september 11, 2001, the united states has confronted a new reality. terrorist groups, many of whom are fueled by religious fervor, have declared a holy war of the united states and have killed thousands of people within our own borders, as well
as in the shooting attacks on the united states -- initiating a tax on the united states at home and abroad. the country has wrestled with how to deal with the alleged terrorist's detained by military forces and other agents of the united states. is that topic that we will briefly touched on today -- it is that topic that we will briefly touch on today. because of the unusual nature of what happened on 9/11, a newly muscular executive branch and a strong response from the judiciary, we have a whole new assignment in which to deal with these issues. they continue. at this moment, the united states is still trying to decide where and how to try khalid sheik mohammed. they are debating whether the so-called christmas shoe bomber
on flight whatever was from northwest airlines should happen ve been mirandized, and whether a person 15 years of age when he was captured in afghanistan should be tried in military court. we are privileged to have a distinguished panel of experts could this is a subject you to discuss four years -- you could discuss for years. i think that you will find our panelists today will spark your interests and i knew -- and unless you in areas that perhaps you have never considered. -- enlighten you in areas that perhaps you have never considered. professor jack goldsmith of harvard law school formerly of the council in the department of
justice. justice kennedy is watching him .o datday the united states district judge from virginia who has presided over several trials, including one we will discuss today, the trial of zacarias moussaoui. prof. elizabeth hillman of the hastings school of law at the inner -- at the university of california, and edward mcmahon and robert spencer. we look forward to hearing from our distinguished panelists. they will make brief presentation and have interplay and we will have about 20 minutes for questions at the end bridge i will turn it over to
professor goldsmith. -- 20 minutes for questions at the end. i will turn it over to professor goldsmith. [applause] >> thank you very much, and that you so much for inviting me to be on this wonderful panel today. as a judge dismissed said, we are nearly nine years after 9/11 -- judge smith said, we are in nearly nine years after 9/11, and we have not yet begun to figure out what to do and how to incarcerate and capacitate alleged terrorists. the bush administration in the last -- and in the last year- and-a-half, the obama administration as well, have committed themselves to three different systems for incapacitating or incarcerating terrorists. the first, the one we will focus on mostly today, is civilian trials, using the ordinary criminal justice system to try, convict, and incarcerate alleged terrorists. civilian courts have been used
to try literally hundreds of tourists and others -- hundreds of terrorists and others related to acts of terrorism. it is a system that some people but is not adequate to dealing with the threat and challenge after 9/11. in addition to the civilian criminal system, which is still used quite often to deal with terrorists, there are other systems, one of which is military commissions. military commissions have a long history in the united states. they have been used in many of our wars. these are traditionally article ii in the sense that they were self-contained military justice systems. they were used most commonly, i think, in the civil war, world war ii. they became very controversial after 9/11 when president bush in november 2001 announced without consulting congress that he was going to use military
commissions. we had giant debate in this country in the last eight to nine years about their proper use. congress has twice weighed in. the supreme court weighed in at in the spring of 2006 and is called -- in a case called hamdan, and validating the of original bush administration scheme. congress responded with the -- invalidating the original bush administration scheme. congress responded by codifying the system with a few changes to the program. the obama administration made additional changes by congress ratified last year. it is a system they have not worked very well at all. there have been political problems, legal problems. that is another option that the obama administration is using to deal with terrorists. the third one, the one that has been relied on most heavily,
is a basis for incapacitating terrorists used in prior wars. the idea, as justice o'connor explained in a plurality opinion in the hamdan case, is that during wartime, a nation has the power to detain for the duration of the conflict simply to keep a person from returning to the battlefield. that traditionally it exists until the end of the conflict. that power has been used at approved by courts in various guises, but it raises all sorts of questions in this war, because of how long the conflict may last, and it may last indefinitely, and because the members of the enemy in this war are harder to distinguish from innocent civilians, so the ordinary processes for determining who was a member of the enemy on forces -- enemy
armed forces are sometimes inadequate. all of these have been used by the government, and the government is basically engaged in what i think is fair to call in more less ad hoc process of determining which ones to use in which circumstances. assistant attorney general did a speech in the spring in which he basically said that the president should use every tool in his toolbox and the different tools would be used for different circumstances. we are going to be focusing on this panel primarily on the civilian trials, because our panel has expertise in that, because that is the sort of baseline against which these other systems are measured. i want to raise a couple of framing points, and i will turn it over to the panel. the first one is that congress has been engaged in military commissions, but congress does
not really been engaged in military detention much or in civilian trials. mostly what is going on in those two is a dialogue between the executive branch and the judiciary. that is fair to sit -- i think it is fair to say that the courts have had an unprecedented role in this war in being much more heavily involved in reviewing the president's wartime actions with regard to detainees than ever in the past. this is mostly a dialogue between the president and the courts. the second point i want to make, before turning it over to our panelists, is that i think this frames use of civilian trials, that the bush administration and the obama administration had asserted -- attorney general eric holder most recently -- that if a terrorist is acquitted at trial and if that person is deemed dangerous and is deemed to be an enemy combatant, the government has the authority
nonetheless, even after acquittal, to detain the prison indefinitely on the military detention rationale. this raises the question of if it is a genuine draft of the person is going to be incarcerated nonetheless -- if it is a genuine trial if the person is going to be incarcerated nonetheless. rob and ed are going to talk about the prosecutorial and defense perspective is in the zacarias moussaoui trial and civilian trials. and judge brinkema will give us the traditional perspective on the files pri -- on the trials. thanks. >> like jack, i would like to thank judge smith and a conference committee that put this together. i'm surprised we are here to talk about this, because it seems a long time yet been hashing over these issues. and in part because my chosen
field of study in american legal history, i did not expect this to become more of tthan a niche issue in american law, instead of the bombshell is become in recent years. when i began to write my dissertation at 10 years ago, at best, military law was a sideshow in american legal history. it is not that anymore. it is now being integrated into the great narrative of american law, the at and flow of constitutional interpretation and the rise of federal authority, and the nationalization of our law, the growth of rights jurisprudence, the balance of power among branches of government. military operations have always been a part of those themes in american legal history. but today we recognize that in a different way, because of the very issue we're talking about today, what to do with a specific group of persons accused of crimes with competing
systems available to try them. i don't have to be labor the point. military commissions are not new. we have many judicial opinions that actually do that quite elegantly for us. i don't have to say that military law and obligations create difficult procedural issues that make us question the meaning of due process and how the parts, different categories of persons to whom we will offer friday to process -- all four varieties of process. as one of the historians on the stage today, i would like to give you details from military commissions and passed to highlight the role that the law and politics have played in some of our prior instances of military commissions, and threats to the nation that have precipitated a new forms in which to try crimes against the state. i would also like to remind you, before closed today, of the impact that the commission said
that -- the commission's have had on the legal system within our armed forces. there are nine judge advocate's on the panel today and we don't have folks with no -- are not judge advocates on the panel today and we do not have the folks from the military, but it is our judge advocates trying to navigate these waters on what is happening with military commissions. jack mentioned that the instances of our past that you know about where we have most used military commissions have been at the civil war and world war ii. let me take a couple of instances to remind you of some of the high-profile cases during that time and talk about the details of those trials briefly. first, the civil war. lots of military commissions, military tribunals, took place during this time, nearly 6000 during the war and reconstruction. the authority to try persons before military commissions
outlasted hostilities themselves. they also did not take place and the battlefield between union and confederate troops or in occupied territories. one of the most celebrated of the military commissions that took place during the war was on the frontier. in 1862, an uprising of four of the sioux tribes in minnesota, in which more than 400 settlers and american soldiers and soldiers working with the american troops were killed. there was a mass trial of the sioux who were charged with those crimes. it took place very quickly, in a summary justice sort of way, on the frontier, and the records were sent to president lincoln to review in the midst of the civil war. when he got those records, he asked his attorney general for guidance. his attorney general said, "you are on your own, mr. president." [laughter] he said, "you cannot delegate
authority to review these records. it must be done by the president." so lincoln, being lic, reviewed all the records -- being lincoln, reviewed all the records. in that commission itself, much denigrated for procedural irregularities, there was an 18% acquittal rate. my point in raising that is to say that it is possible that a military commission undertaken at a situation of exigency cannot be the character of justice that we sometimes assume it to be, and that the political and military objectives that are observed by the commission can sometimes be managed within the context of executive review and clemency that happens afterwards. lincoln undertook that review after the general in the field wrote this to him -- "if the
guilty are not executed, i think it nearly impossible to prevent the indiscriminate massacre of all the indians, old men, women, and children, who are now being held as prisoners." that was 1500 sioux being held by american forces on the field. he said that he could not prevent his men from telling them if he did not execute the men -- from killing them if he did not execute the men right now, but lincoln did not and the massacre did not in soup. -- did not ensue. on april 9, 1865, lee surrendered to grant at appomattox. on april 14, john wilkes booth assassinated president lincoln. president andrew johnson faced difficult decisions. how to try these men, whether to
make the trial secret, and he intended for the trial to be secret for the eight conspirators. general grant convinced him not to do that, another example of the role that generals sometimes play in political and legal decisions made. the accused persons -- eight of them were brought into court staggering, chain, wrapped in black linen. they were convicted quickly by a panel of officers, and sentenced to hang. only four of the death sentences were approved. even in that instance, not all the sentences were carried out. that is when the country was still in a state of martial law in many places that had yet to be lifted. let me step forward to world war ii for just brief comment. we are now in a place for most military commissions were held during the war. most of the courts and the
military commissions were held here to keep -- most provost courts and military commissions were held here to keep peace. the best known child world war ii, that is relevant --, best case in a miami relied on very, very broad conception of conspiracy. some think the imperative to convict in civilian trucks will lead to the contraction of rights of defendants that will spill over into non-terrorism cases. i am wondering what you think of the argument, whether it is a valid concern? >> that is one of the few legitimate arguments. if we tamper with the rules or stretch them too far have the water them down and then treated
bad precedent that may leak into other types of cases? on the flip side, if we start creating special systems for crying, i worry about the expansion of this military justice approach. we used the word war in so manyn concepts here soarco-terrorism is a big word right now. you have significant organized criminal activity in mexico and latin america, creating havoc in those countries, much of it beginning to leak into our border states. i would do not start to think about maybe putting narco- terrorists into this system? prole the biggest threat in the country now is nowcyber terrorism. people abroad who could literally shut down our banking system or airplanes -- very
it is hard to know who is responsible for some type of cyber attack, and they're usually offshore. it is hard to get them to this country. i don't think the type of trial issues we're talking about now are front and center in that context. we will have similar issues from war and terrorism with the government being involved in the domestic, and in the telecommunications and network. how far we want the government to go to keep us safe? consistent with the fourth amendment in number of statutes. that is similar to one that applies in this context of terrorism. >> i have another question, if no one else does. do you have a question? no. [laughter]
>> looking at other bodies to deal with terrorism, in 1980 there was an alien terrorists court which i understand has never been used. do we get any lessons to that as to the failure of the body? >> robbie? >> i don't know much about that. >> i do not either. i would say the same as judge brinkema says -- i don't know that we need it. >> i don't know anything about it. >> let me ask a question about miranda. in connection with the christmas day bomber, the government gave
him within a day or two his read rights.a then the eternal tunnel announced the government might be seeking an exception based on the case which recognized public safety. does anyone on the panel have a question or comment about that? and the importance of miranda warnings. is it a hurdle to terrorism trials? >> it depends on the case. in the case in detroit it seems to be more political meddling in the criminal justice system. they cannot possibly need a confession to win. they have people on the plan who saw him. people who saw him like the fuse. people who beat him up and took the ball away from him.
[laughter] they have pictures of him leaving with a bomb, probably screaming things. what he said after that, i cannot imagine remotely what it would have to do in terms of winning the case. [laughter] >> how about more generally? it seemed to be a big deal, certainly politically. in theory, is it a big deal for civilian courts, or more of a political issue? >> it has chilled statements from people detained for speculative terrorism. for years most investigation and prosecution work was done by the southern district. but new york made a very good record of getting people, getting them to flip and cooperate. we continue that in alexandria. i see it more as theoretical than an actual issue for
prosecuting. >> other thoughts? >> what happens with folks who are captured or arrested who do flip or cooperate? our pleas taken? does it go before an article 3 judge, a commission, or is it a trade for indefinite incarceration, for not getting the death penalty? people cooperating with their interrogators and giving information -- what happens to them under these systems the? >> it depends on the individual case. i had the case in 2003 or 2004, a pakistan-born truckdriver naturalized citizen from ohio who be miami herald" the $50 billion jobs adult could face a tough road. the front page of "usa today,"
focused on jobs. the motion will be the key. she says the unemployment rate in wisconsin is nearly two percentage points below the nation's average and where the president won by 14 percentage point. this year's state democrats are struggling to hang on to the governors see -- seat. and the congressional seat. perhaps the most telling perhaps the most telling barometer of the changing political climate, senator russ feingold, a three-term democrat incumbent is facing what many is a the most typical campaign since he first won his seat back in 1992. he was not in attendance with the president's remarks at the wisconsin labor fest. politico has a piece by richard, when looking ahead at the midterm elections with this conclusion. whether november 2 as a good night for republicans, great or even distort will determine how close they get to winning
control of the house and how deeply the republican party can cut into distinct classes of democratic-held seats. that from politico.com. here's more from the president yesterday in milwaukee. >> when a leader of their campaign committee was asked on national television what republicans would do if they take over congress, you know what he said? he said we would do exactly the same thing we did the last time. that is what he said. that is on tape. [laughter] so, basically here is what this election comes down to. betting between now and november you will come down with amnesia. they figured you will forget what they did to the country. they think you would just believe that they changed. host: a response from
congressman john boehner posted on the website going back with the president first proposed in its office in january of 2009. 18 months ago the administration promised that if we pass their trillion dollars stimulus it would create jobs immediately and keep as soon as a person cas anyone a tea bagger, you cut them off. "vanity fair? nobody reads that anymore. you are a biased, liberal hater. host: we will go to jeff joining us next on the democrats' line. good morning. caller: i guess i am a biased liberal haiti. i never knew that. but -- like host: i think he was referring to me, but that is ok. i have been called worse. [laughter] caller: i guess all i have to say is that the people who are
denigrating president obama are the people who made me wade through eight years of his predecessor. his predecessor is what brought us all the problems that we have. if you feel that you want to vote for a republican this time around, there is nothing that can be said to you. the fellow who just called who insist that people cannot call people what they are -- i call them tea baggers because i don't want to call them brownshirts but if you want to hear the truth, it is brown shirts. the people calling other people nazis of the typical 30 -- german 1930's or 1940's people. host: that is going a little too far, too? caller: when i hear people go as far as they have gone predecessor -- criticizing president obama i do want to react and use words as strong as
they do. host: why don't you let other cable programs use those words and we will deal on a higher plane on c-span? caller: other programs can but fox has been this incredible disinformation tools so all i have is me and that is all i can do is say what is inside me. if people don't like it, they don't like it but it has been hurtful to me so i am not just going to sit back and say you can say all of this stuff about communist and socialist about the present. the present. i am going to have to come back and say things that will shine a little truth on things even if it hurts. host: ok, fair enough. peter orr said this morning who up until last month was the omb director -- one nation, two deficits. deficits. it conclusions. extend the bush tax cuts until 2013 and then get rid of them altogether. they were first implemented back
in 2001. one of the key issues congress will be dealing with when the house and senate lawmakers get back next week. he also looks at the deficit. let's look of the facts. projected deficit for 2015 is 4% to 5% of gdp depending on who's assumption you use. s sustainable level is more likely 3% or lower. so we need deficit reduction of 1% to 2% of gdp or about $200 billion. he goes on to read about medicare, medicaid, and social security saying these programs will account for more than half of spending in 2015. even if you reform social security, which we should. any plausible plan would phase and benefit changes to avoid harming current beneficiaries and would generate little savings over the next five years. of the health reform act included substantial savings in medicare and medicaid. more extensive comments this morning from peter orzag from the op-ed page of "the new york
times." democrats line from florida. good morning. andrew, turn the volume down and please go ahead, please. caller: i believe the democrats does better in the economy. simply because republicans believe you can borrow your way out of these troubles and not pay back and that is what got us into the deficit in the first place. the democrats at least are trying to pay for what they are doing. the second thing. i heard somebody talking about ms. palin. any person who says the n-word ok to use it not a person you can trust. host: we will go on the republican line from houston, texas. e.j. is joining us. good morning. caller: i would like to start by
saying that i think barack obama is a great corridor and give it some good speeches but as far as -- orator gives great speeches, but as far as administrator he is an aristocrat, it is his way or the highway. we need republicans in their to insist on checks and balances. host: from "the new york daily news." signing some of his critics treat him like a dog. and mitch mcconnell from kentucky sang the president's plan should be met with justifiable skepticism because it would raise taxes. here is more from the president yesterday in a milwaukee. >> but there are some folks in washington who see things differently. you know what i am talking about.
when it comes to just about everything we have done to strengthen our middle-class and rebuild our economy, almost every republican in congress says no. even on things we'd usually agree on, they say no. if i said at the sky was blue, they would say no. if i said fish and lived in the dusty, they would say no -- in the the sea, they would say, no. they just think it is better to score political points before the election than to solve problems so they said no to help for small businesses, even though small businesses say we desperately need this. that used to be their key constituency. they said, nope. no to middle-class tax cut. i said, let us give tax cuts the
middle-class. nope. a note to clean energy jobs. note to making college more affordable. no to reforming wall street. they are saying right now no to cutting more taxes for small businesses to help them get financing. somebody out here was yelling, yes, we can. remember, that was our slogan? their slogan is no, we can't. no, no, no. host: we will have more of the president's comments and reactions -- a couple of headlines from "orange county register." the front page story. this courtesy of the newseum. from "the chicago tribune," speaking of the infrastructure, the city needing $1 billion more for expansion and renovation of chicago high plan. -- chicago hair net worth --
chicago o'hare airport. wally is joining us from arizona. good morning to you. caller: good morning. how were you today? host: fine, thank you. you say you don't know. caller: because the economy is in such bad shape i don't see any way it can be fixed. by either party. host: what do you do? caller: you got me, sir. i don't really know. believeou can't really it a lot of what he says because he lies so much. he had been doing it all the way through his campaign and everything. host: the front page of "the financial times," obama in a $50 billion plan to boost jobs. oak hill, california. good morning. caller: you can't believe what
the media says about the polls -- about the democrats can lose. that is propaganda to keep the people from voting. the democrats, if they unite and start voting they can take over the senate with enough senators and house of representatives. and we can fix america. but that is all propaganda. don't fall for it. host: thanks for the call. next up is joe from minneapolis. republican line. caller: good morning. i and glad you are on the air today because i want to talk to you. this country is about -- united states is about putting our country first. i don't really like the premise of your question, who you trust to fix the economy. i think we can have a better discussion on your program without the way the question is. host: what question would you
ask? caller: how can we work together as a country, united states of america? how can we work together as a country to make our country better, to be first? china is doing that. all we have said in the last 80 months is fighting and fighting and not going anywhere -- 18 months. i am very disappointed as a republican the republicans are not doing anything to help. we should put our country first. that is the first thing we should do. put our country first so that 10 years from now for our kids, we are not going, china is number one. what are we doing, for heaven's sake? the other thing i wanted to ask you, i noticed that c-span did show glenn beck rally -- are you guys going to show the 10-2 rally, the rally there in doing in d.c. --
it got organized labor? caller: yes. host: thanks for the call. the front page of "the wall street journal," previewing this piece. the president and one of the most emetic gestures to businesses will propose companies be allowed to write off 100% in new investment in plant and equipment through 2011. a plan the white house says economist could cut business taxes by nearly $200 billion over the next two years. lillis -- mike lillis is joining us from bloomberg news. can you give us of the evolution of the proposal? guest: this last couple of weeks, the white house economic team has been trying to come up with new ways to encourage employment in the country. what they have come up with is a
mix of what we know so far, a mix of stimulus measures through government spending and tax breaks to encourage business investment. the infrastructure piece, which was about $50 billion, announced yesterday by the president in a speech in milwaukee. on the tax side, two polls. one is this proposal to allow businesses to expense 100% of the cost of new investment right away. the other is a proposal to make the research and development tax credit permanent can't change the amount of the most commonly used of those -- and change the amount of the most commonly used. taken together they would encourage, if they were passed, and large capital investment by
businesses. it is unclear what the congressional reaction by republicans is so far. they have not made any public announcement. host: one of the issues that has been percolating all summer, mike dorning, is the issue of tax credits, the uncertainty over the future of texas, namely the bush tax cuts. this proposal put forward by the president of only a two-year plan, correct? it would be for those businesses that invest in this year and 2011. guest: in general you can always depreciate those capital expenditures over periods between 20 or 30 years in most cases. but just over the next two years, through the end of 2011, they could deduct them >> right now, today's white house briefing. here is spokesman robert gibbs. good afternoon. >> there's a church in
gainesville, fla. that says it will go ahead and burned copies of the koran on the 9/11 anniversary. [inaudible] >> the best place to look for the views of this administration would be to look at what general petraeus said over the weekend. we know that type of activity has been transmitted back to places like afghanistan where general petraeus obviously is our lead commander. as he said, it puts our troops in harm's way. any time of activity like that that puts our troops in harm's way would be a concern to this administration theme is there any thought from anyone else in the white house to reach out to the church? >> i have not heard of anything.
>> are you ready to say what the president will be doing saturday. >> he will attend memorial service at the pentagon. i believe the vice president will go to new york and obviously the first lady and former first lady laura bush are in pennsylvania. i don't have the times on the event at the pentagon. >> the economic package you are rolling out, what is the president's legislative strategy for that? will this be passed before election day and is he seeking passage of these measures as one big package or separate measures? >> on the second one, i don't know the answer to. , one package or several packages. i think what the president' will tomorrow is outline a series of proposals many of which you all have read about and reported on
over the past several days that he believes that will continue our strategy to get our economy moving again and more importantly for long-term economic growth. think -- we understand what season we have entered in washington. we know that congress will not be here for a lot of time. we hope there are measures including some of the once the president will outline that congress will pass. they don't do that prior to the election, the president and the economic team still believe that these represent some very important ideas in continuing along our path toward economic recovery. most importantly, you will hear the president talk about this tomorrow in cleveland. this is about long-term economic growth. this is not about the next 60
days or the next 90 days. this is about how we get our economy fully back on track and how we get the millions that want to work back to work and how we repair the economic damage that has been going on, not just over the past two years but over the past 10 years. we did not get into this overdyed as i have said countless times. one of the things the president will do tomorrow is go through the notion of -- for 10 years we saw rules written for the special interests. we saw a blind eye turned toward some of their activities. we sought wages decrease. -- we saw wages decrease greasy families rightly concerned about the future of their children. and whether or not the economy they were going to raise their children in will be one that is
capable of passing on the american dream to each and every one of their children than no. i have not gone white smoke on that. there is nothing i know of today but i cannot rule out at some point that may come during the week. >> your former budget director, mr. orr's that is written in the york times today that the administration is confident it is compromising and wants to extend all the bush tax cuts for two years and then get rid of them. he says higher taxes now would cramp consumer spending. your omb director is saying that if you guys go ahead with what you are proposing which is allowing them to expire --
>> i think he was mostly discussing the permanence of an extension of those in the middle class. >> i am specifically talking of -- >> in reading the article, i think peter orszag had a congressional hat on in terms of what political price congress might have to go through to extend different things. that is not the viewpoint of the president. >> do you agree that higher taxes in terms of the bush tax cuts expiring would crimp consumer spending? >> if you make $250,000 per year in this economy, you are probably not putting off the purchase of a big screen tv. i don't think your consumer demand, if you make a quarter of a million dollars or more per year in this economy, i don't think you are putting off the purchase of a new suit or a new
car because you make $400,000 per year. if you make $40,000 per year, you're putting off a lot of purchases based on the fact that you don't have it and that impacts consumer demand. the way i read the article is that peter is not making the argument about the high end tax cuts. he is making that argument about the middle class taxes where the president certainly agrees that not extending them will certainly have an impact. the president will argue tomorrow that we should extend those middle-class tax cuts and not doing so would most assuredly hurt our economy. again, if you are making to order $50,000 or more per year -- 200,000 -- $250,000 or more per year, there is not a great
pull back in your consumer demand. this economy is not hurting people who make $800,000 per year. deserting families that are making $40,000 per year. -- it is hurting families that are making $40,000 per year. >> there is a poll that indicates more americans are feeling more negatively about the president and especially about the economy for the first time numerically more americans think the president's policies have hurt the economy that have helped the economy. i assume you think they are wrong. why are they wrong? >> first and foremost, as i have said in here a number of times, there is and continues to be great frustration as to where be are in the economy. among those frustrated is the president of united states. we have seen a recession on like virtually anything anybody has
seen in any of their lifetimes. as the president will discuss on wednesday, it will take more than eight two-year or less to get out of that hole. that is why he will talk about on what will continue us on the road to recovery but that recovery will take time. in the end, this president and this administration will be graded on what happens at the end of this road, not some place in between i think the american people are not concerned about the president's poll numbers per that think the american people are concerned about whether or not they have a job, how they can pay their bills, the future of their children. i think that is what the american people are concerned about and that is the task that the president will spend every day worrying about.
>> some said the president is making things worse. >> by virtually any measure, our economy is in a better place than it was two years ago. americans are rightly concerned about our debt and deficits and the president understands that and has taken steps to introduce a budget that includes a freeze on non security and discretionary spending and will spend a decent amount of time in the next many months going through the medium and long-term to get our deficit under control. >> you mentioned the jobs picture. peter orszag says specifically that letting all the tax cuts and expire would make all the -- would make the jobs market worse.
>> my reading of this is that region i do not believe -- if you are looking at and if you're looking for a broad band of economists, they will tell you the best way to get the economy moving is to extend those tax cuts. i don't think you will find them. when president bush signed the 2001 tax cuts into law, i believe it was june of 2001, we were in the midst of every recession. including the monday signed those tax cuts into law, the economy shed jobs for 16 of the next 18 months.
if your argument is that these jobs or these tax cuts would hurt job growth, i don't think you'll find a series of economists give a list of all the things that might be done to get the economy moving again. there is no historical data that you can point to. >> if you raise taxes on the rich and they will be less likely to hire people. doesn't that hurt the employment picture? >> there are 2%-3% of small businesses that would be affected. let's understand what those businesses are. that might be a white-collar law firm that meets the technical definition of not a large number of people employed. we are not talking about the mom-and-pop hardware store. that is not what we are talking about. >> last week from the podium, you basically said there will not be a second stimulus plan.
as the details started coming out, the president is proposing at least $350 billion in new money. >> that is the net cost of the expensive. ng. you've got to research and experimentation tax credit funded by closing corporate loopholes. the expenseing tax, the increase in the expensing and the polling for of that in 2011 as a net cost of $30 billion because what you are doing is taking a schedule for investment appreciation that would be written off as part of your taxes instead of over several years at half, you're pulling all that a vestment forward into one year. that money is not written off in the success of years that the 10-year budget window was part
of. if you added up infrastructure, r &e, and this, it is less than $200 billion. >> even at $200 billion, that is big money. that is a lot of money. >> i am not saying it is a lot of money. >> why aren't you not calling it a stimulus plan? >> i listed a series of things the president had done over the course -- you go back to last august, one year and one month ago, we had cash for clunkers. we extended unemployment insurance because it was for those who were unemployed
regardless of the number of weeks up to 99 weeks, they would lose their benefits. we ensure that states would not lay off teachers and firefighters when we need them most. the president has taken steps along the way beyond the recovery act itself to do things that were necessary to continue to spur our economic recovery. that is exactly what is being done. >> not much gets done on capitol hill now. why has the president waited until now to introduce these tax-cut proposals? why would the president wait for exactly the point when he knows things don't
of politics? >> yes, and what about the logic of the president introducing in now? maybe there are people who have propose 100% expensedising. i don't know if the expansion -- i am sure the permanence of r &e, i am not sure the simplification of research and experimentation -- >> you can't possibly get through congress and you know that. >> congress does not stop
thinking about what it will do after november. the president is putting on the table a series of economic ideas. >> why did he not do a year ago? >> if you look at the expens i9ng provisions -- there was a 50% provision in 2009. the small business bill that is before the senate continues the 200950% expensing threshold. we are saying that for 2011, we believe that 50% to go to one other%. that builds up an effort to get capital into the economy. some of this stuff builds of of what has already been done.
>> john mccain says the coming up with it now says it is a sign that it ministration is try to come up with anything they can. >> i want to separate --we are in the political season, we get that. this is not simply something the president is proposing to get somehow through the next seven weeks of how we get our economy from where is it to where we want to be. the president is focused on the problems that the american people have, the economic situation we all find ourselves and. it may or may not overlap well with a political calendar that is not -- the president is not here to solve the nation's problems on the political calendar.
the assault -- he is here to solve the nation's problems as they exist. that is what he is elected to do and that is what he will focus his time on doing. >> have you heard the president's comments on the koran story? >> i have not. >> the president said the infrastructure improvements yesterday would increase jobs immediately. >> some of that depends on when something would pass. if you pass something in the next few months, i think you could certainly see jobs created for the summer construction season -- the spring construction season. >> does this mean the package will not stimulate the economy? >> i think there are a series of things that would help put our economy on a stronger road to
recovery. more importantly, you could dump whatever you want into the economy to get the economy to do certain things in a very short period of time. none of that -- let's take the infrastructure for instance. it is built off of what congress will ultimately do as part of a six-year transportation reauthorization plan. one out of every five people that become unemployed, used to spend time of the construction industry. back when we had fairly easy loans to buy a house and back when millions of units of homes were being billed annually, we now know because of foreclosure and credit and the economy, there is a vast surplus. >> these factors are designed to stimulate the economy? >> they are designed to continue our economic recovery.
>> you have an ounce pay for for some of these proposals but not all of them. how does that run up against your discretionary spending? >> on the call wendell was talking about, there was a call for oil and gas companies to pay for an increased number of infrastructure. that would fall in to the non- security discretionary spending. > >> [inaudible] >> some things are designed as a bucket of otherwise discretionary spending and some are designed for tax incentives
that will take capital and money off the sidelines and put it into the economy. >> in other words, you are prepared to deficit spend right now? >> there are certainly proposals in here that would do that, yes. >> 58% believe that if the republicans get control, they will have different ideas than that this administration but 35% think they will fall back on old policies. it's in black voters are directly rejecting arguments the present -- it seems that voters are directed rejecting arguments that the president makes. >> i think the sessions of verbatim that we want to return to those policies. >> it seems voters don't know that. >> we will spend the next couple of months sharpening that
argument if need be to ensure that people know that. >> in the peter orszag piece, he made the economic argument made and made the political argument about the tax cuts saying that maybe the cost of a deal with republicans. he says that would be a trade- off. >> the president of the point is that we cannot afford to extend the tax cuts for those making more than $250,000 more per year. for most of the spending for extending those tax cuts comes from, almost all of it, the bulk of it comes from in comes that surpass $1 million. roughly for a millionaire, and
-- the president does not believe we are $100,000 tax cut from a millionaire away from a family making $40,000 per year. >> is the signing legislation that will prove that? >> error viewpoint is that -- our viewpoint is that we should and must pass legislation that extends the tax cuts for middle- class families but we cannot afford in this environment in our budgetary and fiscal environment to extend the tax cuts for those that make more than $250,000 per year or more. >> are you ruling that out? >> i am simply stating our position. >> why are you dead set against using the term stimulus especially for they public-works component aof this proposal? >> some of them build off of
what was in the recovery act. i do not think that this is anywhere near the level of what was enacted at the beginning of the administration. >> you said a few minutes ago that the president wants to put on the table this series of economic ideas. how you see the prospects for getting off the table? >> if you go back and look at it, some of these ideas have some support. at some point, we will have to stop playing politics and start getting about fixing the economy because that is what is right for the american people. at some point, the other party will begin to do that and we will have a series of proposals for them to look at. >> in terms of white house relations, did peter orszag give you a heads up that he was going
to be riding on this subject? >> we did not see his column before it appeared today. i think it was reported late last week that he would start writing a column. nobody that i am aware of solid column. >> [inaudible] >> this mark on your face seems to underscore the emotional pain i am not putting you through. >> you said the president said it is not affordable to extend tax cuts. to the middle class. that is his point. >> the president disagrees with that pare. >> it says the president disagrees with o formmb director.
>> yes pare. i was not in every meeting with peter orszag. he may have made this point before but i was not in on those meetings. >> to discuss issues with the nato meeting and secretary clinton? >> i don't have a read out on that but we will on the nato secretary general a little bit later. my guess is that most of that had to do with afghanistan them off to what extent is the speech tomorrow a direct response to convert behner's speech a couple of weeks ago? >> it is in the same city and i think the president will use that opportunity to contrast a vision of returning to a decade
of policy and value decisions that got us into this mess. if you look back at what congress be meanthner said in that speech, he seemed to lay out a strong predicate for the very same type of decisions that had been made over the past 10 years that got us into this mess. i anticipate the president spent a decent amount of time on that theme what about community college? >> i think it is cleveland and cleveland. >> is giving a speech the becausebehner is giving the speech where >>? yes, i did not want to put you through this and emotional. >> what about the oval office abroad? you folks attribute the quote to martin luther king.
>> i think which stipulates for history that it was not us who thought he said it. it was many other people. >> you pointed out that dr. king often pointed to the fact that these were the words of dr. theodore parker. was the president aware of these words? >> we have not covered the rug today in our discussions. i read some of the back-and- forth on this. we learn a lot of important history. i think what dr. king said and what dr. parker said are not the same thing. what is on the rug is what dr. king has said. >> does the white house not
believe that dr. parker should get some credit? >> nobody gets credit on the rug. it is just a quote if i see you in their riding on the rug, you will be in trouble. [laughter] i think it is just around the edges. >> analysts are forecasting that the republicans could gain over 40 states and very possibly substantially more. >> that's certainly hedges your bets. >> do you say a political landscape now where the republicans -- >> i will not take business away from charlie cook or others by making predictions. >> you don't think that will not happen? >> i think i said a few weeks ago that i thought democrats
would retain the house and the senate and i still believe that. >> yesterday when the president at lead to that his critics talk about him like a dog, what does he mean? >> i have not talked to him about that but i assume it is some of what has been said about the president. it matches them up against the facts. on occasion, dogs get a better representation. >> b was theay that he referred to? >> i'm sure there several thousand. >> one thing the president said to the assembly that one of his goals was to reduce the skepticism and distrust of the u.s. and abroad. have you talked about this with them lately? >> i have not talked to him about this lightly. i can see of the national
security folks that. have. if you look at where the views of those across the world have of this country now and how they thought of it when the president into office, i think we have seen an improvement in world opinion but i think what is a portent is the removal of skepticism and distrust in world opinion and that is not a means or an end. we need to do things that are
important to increase the security of people throughout the world. this action predates what the president said last september. starting with north korean sanctions and extending to sanctions on iran. i think there are a whole host of things, and additional start treaty pending before the senate to cut the threat of nuclear weapons in this page. all are a result of better relationships we have with other countries. >> looking forward to the meeting coming up, is there a particular focus that you can highlight? >> i have not spent a lot of time and what the program looks like but as we get closer, i will. >> the president was not born with a silver spoon in his month -- now that we had economic struggle. why does nato about that more?
>> he talked about it yesterday and i think you'll talk about it more on wednesday. that was part of what he has talked about for many years. i have not looked back at all his speeches about whether or not that has been a lot of what he talked about or how much that has changed. a lot of his pages have tended to walk people through likely what they are experiencing in their lives versus what is happened in his. >> residents have been successful with these arguments before president clinton, even the second president bush to some degree. do you think he needs to do a good deal more than that? >> i think you'll hear some of that tomorrow. i think you heard some of that yesterday.
i think it is a good part of the type of decisions and the type of values that leads to the decisions he makes. as part of our economic recovery. i'd think you'll hear more about that. >> on peter orszag, was he someone vote was a dissenting voice periodically or was he someone who pretty much follow through on giving the president ideas or implementing things the president wanted to? ? >> i would not want to generalize about anybody here. probably, like a number of people that work here, if you walk into any meeting, people
have opinions that may or may not very with those in the room. i think it would be hard to put anybody in a box for two years of service in 01 and need a box so quickly. >> he made a persuasive argument in this story he wrote about a nation in deep deficit and had to come out of that parent \ . he brought back to what he said. did he bring something to the table when people were talking about that this morning? did he bring it to the table when he was with the president? >> i think peter orszag,
depending on the issue, has had varying opinions on what to do when and how best to executed. i hate that is true for a whole host of different policies. >> there are some in cleveland city proper who are concerned say they are prime example of a city that can benefit from a stimulus package and the president continues to go on the outskirts of cleveland. they say the city has 20% unemployment rate, 17,000 vacant homes, and the president goes to the outskirts. why doesn't he go to cleveland proper? >> i don't think what you talk
about -- that does not mean that -- i'm trying to figure out the best way to say this. what the president is talking about is companies that are in cleveland proper or around creek -- or around cleveland. these tax cuts would help them. infrastructure spending, building new roads and bridges and runways will help everybody. this is not a suburban economics batch or an urban economic speech. i don't think the president or the team -- i don't they have dissected this quite down to that level in terms of the type of things we need and the type of problems we face. >> two "washington post"
editorials or had lied to discourage other rate. they ask why the justice department has dithered for one year. the president cares about this. necessarily read what you were referring to them what they are editorial "in the washington post." i have them write it. >> is the reverence the department of justice, that is a pretty good thing. >> you don't believe that any of us would talk about you like a dog, do you? >> can i get back to you on that wind [laughter] ? i am going through the same sort of a tortured soul like a ha imaginens is going through -- i am going to the same sort of a tortured soul that hans is going
through. >> given the relationship between the administration and the company, what level of confidence to you have that this will produce [inaudible] .> i know of no one on i have seen clips alluding to the notion that this will be a. released i think we want a chance to look at the report. i think an important part of that investigation ultimately will be a look at the borlap preventer itself which only in the last few days has been brought to the surface. that will give us a chance to see whether there was a design flaw or something.
>> secretary-general rasmussen visit, what about the role of afghanistan? is this becoming a heavier burden on u.s. soldiers on the ground? has general petraeus and expressed or requested more nato involvement in afghanistan? >> i don't know about the second part. as part of what the president announced last december at west point, nato contributed an increase in forces on the ground
in afghanistan. it was a contribution that i know commanders at the time the league would play a crucial role in our overall strategy. obviously, the problems that we face in afghanistan and pakistan dealing with al-qaida and its extremist allies, their potential return to an environment that allows, if they were to return, unfettered planning for an additional terrorist attack, that is not something that is in the interest of the united states in preventing. it is of international concern. that is why there is an international security systems forced their currenre. i know our commanders are thankful for that
involvement. >> are these other commanders as concerned about a terrorist attack? >> i certainly would not say that. if you look at what has happened over the past couple of years in places, the past few years, in places like england and spain, i don't think you could make a very eloquent point that there are not those in the nato allies that have not also experienced the type of terrorism, maybe